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Rich List 2017: No.9 - Lord Edmiston

Christian property and automotive entrepreneur Lord Edmiston wants to spend more time on charity work as his fortunes continue to grow

Lord Edmiston
Lord Edmiston

Property/Automotive
2017: No.9 - £750m
2016: No.12 - £475m

Lord Edmiston is quitting the House of Lords to spend more time on his charity work.

He is one of the UK's biggest philanthropic donors and wants to devote more of his time to religious and educational charities.

He set up Christian Vision in 1988, a worldwide charity aiming to help a billion people.

The charity has assets of around £270 million last year, helped by a £25.6 million personal donation from Lord Edmiston.

His Coleshill-based property investment and development group IM Properties continues to perform very well indeed.

Profits went through the £100 million barrier in 2015, up by 242 per cent from the 2014 figure of £42.5 million .

Turnover was up 30 per cent to £164 million despite significant land investments.

At year end the total value of IM's investment portfolio, including projects under construction, stood at £811 million.

The company's war chest was further boosted by the £200 million sale of an industrial portfolio - including assets in Solihull and Tamworth - to a Malaysian pension fund.

The company has assets of nearly £530 million.

A new division - IM Land - has been established by the cash-rich group to identify and acquire new residential sites to sell on to housebuilders and developers.

The company owns a string of landmark sites across the UK, including Birmingham's prestigious 55 Colmore Row which is being developed as prime city centre office space, and the Blythe Valley Business Park near Solihull.

Plans have been unveiled for a major expansion at Blythe Valley to include a 200-bed hotel, a 250 bed care home and 750 houses.

IM plans to develop a new business park near the M1 motorway in Nottinghamshire which could support thousands of jobs.

Nottingham 26 will be located on a site off the A610 and will be made up of four large industrial units including a 460,000 sq ft distribution centre.

The company’s bespoke residential arm, Spitfire Properties LLP, celebrated its fifth full year of trading with rapid expansion and construction underway on developments at Little Aston, Solihull, Bath and Ascot among others.

Meanwhile things are progressing well at IM Group’s other major business – its automotive arm, which imports Subaru, Daihatsu, Great Wall and Isuzu vehicles.

In August the company acquired Citroen Motors Ireland, which includes the Airside retail group in Dublin.

Lord Edmiston remains in the top 10 list of Britain’s biggest philanthropists, having donated to religious, humanitarian and educational charities through Christian Vision.

Since 1998 he has donated well over £350 million to various causes. He is also a significant donor to the Conservative party.

Christian Vision sponsors three city academies in the Midlands including the Grace Academies in Darlaston, Solihull and Coventry.

Teaching is based on Christian principles, encouraging decency, respect and compassion.

A former finance director at the failed Jensen Motors, Lord Edmiston used his £6000 redundancy pay to set up International Motors in 1974.

He began as the world’s only distributor for Jensen parts before acquiring the franchises for Subaru and Isuzu.

The IM group is housed on a purpose-built 200-acre site in Coleshill which is the headquarters of its global operations.

Seventy year-old Lord Edmiston is a committed and active Christian. His charity has helped families and children around the globe, and has a presence in the United States, Brazil, Chile, Zambia, Mozambique, Australia, East Timor and Angola.

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